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Afghanistan: Officials Accuse the US Military of Killing Eight Policemen | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Local Afghan officials said that US forces killed eight Afghan policemen in raids that were meant to protect them from a rebel attack on a police post in the south of the country on Sunday.

This incident in the troubled state of Uruzgan is the first of its kind since the powers of US forces stationed in Afghanistan were expanded in June. According to local officials contacted by AFP by telephone, the Americans intervened when rebels attacked a police station near the capital of the state, Tarinkot.

The chief of the state’s police Rahim Ullah Khan said that “one policeman was killed in the first raid and whilst others were trying to save him, another strike took place killing seven people”.

The security official added that the police station was the target and said that “It is impossible that the airstrike targeted the police station by accident. Every time this happens, (the Americans) say that it was a mistake”.

A policeman who survived the raids named Mohammed Siddiq added that the policemen were “fighting with the Taliban at close range when the US airstrike occurred”. Another policeman who survived, Tor Jan, said “I was here when a fighter jet, and then a helicopter attacked us.”

An official from Uruzgan’s local council Mohammad Karim Zai Khadim said that the policemen “were inside their station at the time of the US raid”. In Kabul, NATO confirmed that two raids took place on Sunday in support of Afghan forces that were threatened by attackers.

Brigadier General Charles Cleveland, a spokesman for NATO’s military mission said that the raids “targeted individuals who were targeting and threatening our Afghan partners in Tarinkot.” He added “We do not have information about these individuals, and US, NATO and Afghan forces have the right to defend themselves. In this case, they responded to an imminent threat”.